Turn Bluetooth On and Off from Command Line on macOS

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Bluetooth has been a revelation in wireless technology: wireless mice, headphones, streaming devices, and a variety of home and office environments.  It goes without saying that wireless peripherals are so much easier to manage than wired counterparts, especially mice, that I usually have my MacBook's bluetooth turned on.

There are times, however, that I move my laptop away from the mouse (OK, I admit:  the kitchen) where the bluetooth connection is still in range but with the mouse still connected, I can't use my laptop's touchpad, leaving me to only use my keyboard which is an annoyance.  That led me to finding blueutil, a command line utility for macOS that lets me turn Bluetooth on and off with one command!

Start by installing blueutil with HomeBrew:

brew install blueutil

The -p flag is a switch for turning bluetooth on and off:

# Turn bluetooth off
blueutil -p 0

# Turn bluetooth on
blueutil -p 1

This utility will be so helpful as I move around my house.  Since I can't use my touchpad during these situations, I can't turn Bluetooth off from the command bar, so a simple command like this is exactly what I need!

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  1. Patrick K

    Thanks for sharing this! I was trying to find an easier way to toggle Bluetooth and I kept finding articles about AppleScript, but this is way easier for people familiar with the command line.

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